Sexual orientation

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  • solid bars have significant differences in time to at least one other group
  • hatched bars have no significant difference to any other group
  • missing bars mean that this value has been suppressed due to small numbers of responses for that breakdown

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1 Introduction

This section discusses how respondents of different sexual orientations spent their time in 2020. Respondents were asked to describe their sexual orientation using the following response options: heterosexual/straight, gay/lesbian, bisexual, other sexual orientation (specify), or ‘prefer not to say’. The LGB+ category is thus comprised of all responses different from heterosexual or straight and unknown.

Responses were grouped into heterosexual or straight and LGB+ due to a small number of responses for some of the options.

  • those who responded with heterosexual/straight were categorised as Heterosexual or Straight (1,017 diary days).

  • those who responded with Gay/Lesbian or Bisexual were categorised as LGB+ (68 diary days).

  • those who responded with ‘Prefer not to say’ were categorised as Unknown (15 diary days).

The category of unknown has been removed from the analysis as it does not provide a meaningful and robust comparison between categories.

When interpreting the below findings it’s important to note that LGB+ people tend to be younger and, as a result, age may also play a role in a LGB+ person’s likelihood to do or not do an activity.

2 Activity type

Overall, there were no differences in how heterosexual or straight respondents spent their time compared to LGB+ respondents when looking at the overarching categories of free time, paid work, personal care, unpaid work. However, there were some differences within the free time category.

4 Unpaid work

There were no differences between heterosexual and LGB+ respondents on time spent on unpaid work activities.

5 Personal care

There were no differences between heterosexual and LGB+ respondents in terms of time spent on personal care.

6 Free time

6.1 LGB+ respondents spent more time on other leisure activities compared to heterosexual or straight respondents

Figure 1: A bar chart showing average time spent on free time by sexual orientation, Scotland, 2020

LGB+ respondents spent longer on other leisure activities (5 hours and 5 minutes per day on average) compared to heterosexual respondents (4 hours and 12 minutes per day on average). This includes activities such as reading books, watching TV, playing games, listening to music, spending time online, etc.

7 Did activity type

There were no differences between sexual orientations on time spent on the four activity types when using a sample based on only those who took part in the activity.

8 Did paid work

When looking at the respondents who did paid work, there were no differences between heterosexual and LGB+ respondents on time spent in paid work.

9 Did unpaid work

When looking at the respondents who did unpaid work, there were no differences between groups on the different types of unpaid work.